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Thermal Imaging Inspections


Remember reading about those X-Ray glasses on the back of the comic book when you were a kid, and thought that if you had them you could see through walls? Well, that technology has arrived (sort of) in the form of Thermal Imaging. With Thermal Imaging we can see the Heat Signatures through the wall giving a clear look at what is going on under the surface.


If you are considering purchasing a home for you and your family, you owe it to yourself to get the WHOLE story. The Home Inspection will tell you the condition of the home on the surface, but the Thermal Imaging Inspection will tell you the condition of the home under the surface. Things that your eyes can't see. 


Let's start with the basics. What is Thermal Imagining?

Thermal imaging uses infrared technology to detect very small differences in temperature. Every material has a unique thermal signature and when moisture, heat, cold, or wood destroying insects are introduced into the structure the thermal signature changes. The changes can be subtle or dramatic but with this incredible thermal image scanning technology the thermal signatures are detectable where they wouldn't be able to be seen with the naked eye.

Thermal image scanning technology is now being used to evaluate residential and commercial structures. As a non-invasive testing tool it can quickly help discern where there are suspected issues. This can help to limit the areas where time consuming further evaluation and destructive discovery is needed.

 

Now lets talk about what Thermal Imagining is NOT.

MOISTURE METER - The infrared thermal imaging camera is NOT a moisture meter. It simply identifies thermal anomalies. This device greatly aids in identifying areas that need further investigation.

X-RAY VISION - The infrared thermal imaging camera is NOT an X-ray vision scope. It does not provide the user with an immediate Superman S on their chest with the ability to clearly see inside walls. Instead, it identifies thermal differences.

SILVER BULLET - The infrared thermal imaging camera is NOT a silver bullet solution, but when it is used in conjunction with other technologies thermal imaging has helped us to identify issues that are rarely identified during the limited visual home inspection process.

RISK ELIMINATOR - The infrared thermal imaging camera does NOT completely remove the risks of concealed damage.

Everything looks good here, right?
Wrong! Cool air is pouring into the room from outside.
Water intrusion over an exterior door
This overheating circuit breaker could easily become an electrical fire.

Okay, What can this new technology do for me during my Home Inspection?

  • Moisture Detection in Walls and Ceilings - As demonstrated above, thermal imaging is a great tool that helps to identifying water damage in walls, floors, and ceilings. By detecting the difference in temperature between a wet area and the surrounding dry areas thermal imaging can help detect moisture issues that would not be visible during a limited visual home inspection. It is also great at identifying areas where the insulation contractor failed to insulate adequately.

  • Stucco & EIFS Inspections - Thermal image scanning has greatly improved our ability to perform stucco and EIFS moisture intrusion inspections. If there is rot behind the stucco it is often visible with thermal imaging in the form of heat anomalies. Thermal image scanning also helps to quantify the affected areas of moisture damage. By adding this tool to our stucco inspections we have been able to better identify where the trouble areas are that need repair.

  • Wood Destroying Insect Activity - Significant wood destroying insect activity can be detected using this technology due to the heat generated by active infestations. That's right, active termite activity produces a great deal of heat that is often visible to the infrared camera. Minor activity may not be detectable but areas not normally visible to the naked eye can be identified, and then a more invasive or technically exhaustive inspection can be carried out by the appropriate professional.

  • Energy Audits - We do not currently specialize in performing energy audits, but thermal imaging has been a great tool to help homeowners save money, especially now that energy rates are on the rise. Heat loss and/or cold air influx can be detected and corrective actions can be taken to help improve the energy efficiency of residential and commercial structures. Once the energy wasting areas are identified, then changes can be made to make a dramatic difference in energy consumption which means less money out of pocket.

  • Flat Roof Inspections- If you have a leak on a new to mid life flat roof and have been told that a new roof is needed, then call us first. We may be able to save you a substantial amount of money. Thermal imaging can be used to detect the precise location of the leak and mark the affected area so that repairs can be made to the leaking area. Obviously, if the roof is older then you should fore go the thermal imaging and invest in the needed new roof.

  • Electrical Inspections - Loose or dirty electrical connections and other electrical anomalies can cause power outages and possible fires. We can inspect the electrical panels and receptacles to detect issues before there is a costly outage. Thermal imaging can detect hot spots in the electrical system not visible to the naked eye which may be a precursor to a larger issue. The resulting report can be a great aid for the repair electrician hired to address the identified issues.

  • Plumbing Inspections - Water leaks from the plumbing system often leak undetected until major damage has occurred. We can scan in, under, and around plumbing fixtures in the home to determine if there is active leaking going on. Since this tool is not a moisture meter we will use it to find heat anomalies and then pursue the issue further to attempt to determine the source and cause of the leak. Thermal image scanning can detect temperature anomalies in the plumbing system not visible to the naked eye which may be a precursor to a larger issue. The resulting Thermal Image Scan report can be a great aid for the repair plumber hired to address the identified issues.

So remember to ask about adding a Thermal Image Scan when you call to schedule your Home Inspection. "Sometimes it's the things you can't see that can hurt you the most".

We proudly use state of the art FLIR® equpiment, and have been certified in the use of their equipment.


Please call us anytime, from anywhere, Toll Free @ 1-800-863-8831

Proudly serving Lake City, Live Oak, Gainesville, and everywhere in between!